Google Updates Google Glass, Offers Explorer Program Invites
Samsung may have entered the wearable computing space with the Samsung Galaxy Gear recently, but it clearly hasn’t scared Google away. The company announced two refreshes to its Google Glass program today. The first is a slightly tweaked version of the Google Glass hardware, and the second is a slightly tweaked invite program for getting the wearable computer in the hands of more users.
Google announced the changes this afternoon in a post on its Google+ social network. Google isn’t altering the makeup of the Google Glass hardware in any dramatic ways. Starting with the most recent hardware refresh, users can “swap out” their edition of Google Glass so that they can have it work with “future lines of shades and prescription frames.”
The company is also adding a small mono earbud to new Google Glass devices as well. Google is giving all Google Glass Explorer Edition users who purchased a device before today the option to trade in the device for this upgraded version. Google says it’ll allow users to switch Google Glass colors as a part of the update as well, however users only have the next 60 days to do so.
According to the same update on Google Plus, Google will begin letting owners of the Google Glass Explorer Edition invite up to three different friends into the Google Glass program. Google says it’ll make the invitations available to Glass owners over the next few weeks.
The company also used the occasion to post a new promotional video for Google Glass. The video depicts different scenarios that a Google Glass device would be useful in. These include displaying the date and time and getting accurate information about landmarks and things around users.
While Google is opening up the Glass program to more potential early adopters, it hasn’t announced any changes to the current Google Glass pricing. Those who manage to get invites to the Google Glass Explorer Program will still need to pay $1,500 to get the headset.
All Google Glass hardware includes a 640 x 360 display, a front-facing 5-megapixel camera, 16GB of on-board storage, Bluetooth compatibility for connecting to smartphones and Android 4.0.4 or higher.